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Discussion in 'Spiritual Articles' started by vsgrewal48895, Mar 19, 2009.

  1. vsgrewal48895

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    Writer SPNer

    Mar 12, 2009
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    The virtue of fortitude enables one to conquer fear, even the fear of death. It helps us in facing many trials and persecutions. It disposes one even to renounce and sacrifice his life in defense of a just cause. Fortitude is the guard and support of the other virtues.

    ਰੋਗੁ ਵਡੋ ਕਿਉ ਬਾਂਧਉ ਉਧੀਰਾ ॥ ਰੋਗੁ ਬੁਝੈ ਸੋ ਕਾਟੈ ਪੀਰਾ ॥ Roug Vadou Keo Bandhou Dheera, Roug Bujhai So Katai Peera.

    The disease is so deadly, how can I find the courage? Akal Purkh knows my disease, and only It can take away the pain. -----Guru Nanak, Raag Basant, AGGS, Page, 1189-6

    Fortitude is defined as a moral virtue that ensures firmness in difficulties and constancy in the pursuit of the good. It strengthens the resolve to resist temptations and to overcome obstacles in the moral life. It is stubbornness in the face of overwhelming odds.

    ਕਾਮੁ ਕੋ੍ਧ ਵਿਰੋਧੁ ਲੰਘਿ ਲੋਭੁ ਮੋਹੁ ਅਹੰਕਾਰੁ ਵਿਹਾਣਾ ॥ ਸਤਿ ਸੰਤੋਖ ਦਇਆ ਧਰਮੁ ਅਰਥੁ ਸੁ ਗਰੰਥੁ ਪੰਚ ਪਰਵਾਣਾ ॥
    Kaam Krodh Virodh Langh Lobh Moh Ahankar VihaNa, Sat Santokh Daya, Dharam Arath Sangrath Panch ParwaNaa.

    Resisting lust and anger one can overcome greed, infatuation and ego. Guru willed espouses the five virtues of Truth, Contentment, Compassion, Righteousness, and Fortitude.
    -----Bhai Gurdas, Var 7, Pauri, 5-2 & 3

    Fortitude is the marshal of thoughts, the armor of the will, and the fort of reason. Affliction is the wholesome soil of virtue, where patience, honor, sweet humility take root and strongly flourish. So does calm fortitude. Strength of a man, in the ranks, rests upon his strength of character.

    Reciting the Akal Purkh’s Name gives one the courage to overcome fear. This is part of the ethics of virtue rather than the ethics of principle that has dominated modernity. Courage is of two kinds. Active courage that gets people killed, and Inner courage that keeps people alive. Each has its benefits and drawbacks. One should learn to become more conscious as to what is happening before making a choice.

    According to virtue ethics, the cultivation and formation of character through virtues such as temperance and fortitude is the essential aspect of the moral life. According to principle ethics, most important is the knowledge of ethical principles. Principles such as acts from duty will guide individuals and communities. This guidance will not come from acts from the desire to maximize pleasure or minimize pain.

    The physical thresholds are in fact low and smooth, but they coincide with moral thresholds that are so high and hard that few of us cross them. Affliction is the wholesome soil of virtue, where patience, honor, sweet humility, and calm fortitude, take root and strongly flourish.

    ਸਭ ਦੂਂ ਨੀਵੀ ਧਰਤਿ ਹੈ ਆਪੁ ਗਵਾਇ ਹੋਈ ਓਡੀਣੀ॥ ਧੀਰਜੁ ਧਰਮੁ ਸੰਤੋਖ ਦਿ੍ੜ ਪੈਰਾ ਹੇਠਿ ਰਹੈ ਲਿਵ ਲਿਣੀ ॥

    Sabh Doon Nivi Dharat Hai Aap Gava-ay H-oay Odeeni, Dheeraj, Dharm Santokh Dirrh, Paira Hayth Rahai Liv LeeNee.

    The earth is most humble. It eschews ego, is firm and steady. Deeply rooted in fortitude, righteousness, contentment, it remains tranquil under feet.
    -----Bhai Gurdas, Vaar 4, Pauri 2-1 & 2

    Those are the thresholds of unencumbered self-determination -- of seductive promises, of self-indulgence and of lack of accountability. A residual tradition or the needs of a loved one occasionally get us on the other side of comfort, and we feel surprised and grateful. But the blandishments of technology will not disappear. The decision to cross the thresholds must be made daily. Steadiness in crossing them can come only from an arduously acquired and faithfully maintained habit -- a virtue, as Aristotle and Aquinas would call it. Courage is not quite the right name for it, but fortitude is. Fortitude needs to become the defining virtue of the postmodern era.
    Working with our afflictive emotions takes enormous courage. When we begin to face unpleasant emotions such as fear, anger and jealousy, it may feel like we will die in the process since the pain that comes from the presence of those emotions may be very intense. Courage does not mean being fear-less. It means staying present with the experience through the fear of losing our sense of self, our sense of security, and our belief in the reality of our mental images and concepts to which we are so attached.

    Most of our definitions of a perfect person include being consistent, calm, loving, compassionate, wise and so forth — in other words, to have a perfect mind. However, there is no such thing as a perfect mind in the modern days.

    Inherent to creation is the existence of opposites. Everything exists in contrast: there can be no good without evil, no right without wrong, no pleasure without pain, no security without insecurity, no happiness without unhappiness, no teacher without a student, no parent without a child, no enlightenment without delusion, and so forth. Life moves in cycles going from one extreme to the other.

    In actuality, we all possess qualities of mind; everyone does. In truth, when we are looking at what we believe to be "our mind," we are looking at the mind of all humanity. It does not mean that we act based upon any of the unskillful qualities we may find. It is just as important to have the courage to acknowledge that they are there.

    Ultimate reality, the goal of our spiritual search, is a unity of opposites; in ultimate truth there are no boundaries anywhere. To experience this wholeness, we must reclaim those aspects of our mind that we have denied, pushed away, judged, and kept hidden and suppressed. It just means having the courage to be so open with our mental processes that we can recognize what is truly occurring from moment to moment, thereby noticing its true characteristics.

    ਧੀਰਜੁ ਧਰਮੁ ਗੁਰਮਤਿ ਹਰਿ ਪਾਇਆ ਨਿਤ ਹਰਿ ਨਾਮੈ ਹਰਿ ਸਿਉ ਚਿਤੁ ਲਾਵੈ ॥

    Dheeraj Dharam Gurmat Har Paaee-aa Nit Har Namai Har Seo Chit Lavai.

    Through the Guru's Teachings, I have obtained courage, faith on the Akal Purkh, which keeps my mind focused continually on It, and Its Name.
    -----Guru Ramdas, Raag Gujri, AGGS, Page, 494-9

    Some Sabds of Guru Arjan on fortitude:

    ਜਾ ਕਉ ਮੁਸਕਲੁ ਅਤਿ ਬਣੈ ਢੋਈ ਕੋਇ ਨ ਦੇਇ ॥ਲਾਗੂ ਹੋਏ ਦੁਸਮਨਾ ਸਾਕ ਭਿ ਭਜਿ ਖਲੇ ॥ਸਭੋ ਭਜੈ ਆਸਰਾ ਚੁਕੈ ਸਭੁ ਅਸਰਾਉ ॥ਚਿਤਿ ਆਵੈ ਓਸੁ ਪਾਰਬ੍ਰਹਮੁ ਲਗੈ ਨ ਤਤੀ ਵਾਉ ॥

    jaa ka-o muskal at banai dho-ee ko-ay na day-ay. laagoo ho-ay dusmanaa saak bhe bhaj khalay. sabho bhajai aasraa chukai sabh asraa-o. chit aavai os paarbarahm lagai na tatee vaa-o.

    When you are confronted with terrible hardships, and no one offers you any support, when your friends turn into enemies, and even your relatives have deserted you, and when all support has given way, and all hope has been lost if you then come to remember the Supreme God, even the hot wind shall not touch you.

    ਸਾਹਿਬੁ ਨਿਤਾਣਿਆ ਕਾ ਤਾਣੁ ॥ਆਇ ਨ ਜਾਈ ਥਿਰੁ ਸਦਾ ਗੁਰ ਸਬਦੀ ਸਚੁ ਜਾਣੁ ॥ ਜੇ ਕੋ ਹੋਵੈ ਦੁਬਲਾ ਨੰਗ ਭੁਖ ਕੀ ਪੀਰ ॥ ਦਮੜਾ ਪਲੈ ਨਾ ਪਵੈ ਨਾ ਕੋ ਦੇਵੈ ਧੀਰ ॥ਸੁਆਰਥੁ ਸੁਆਉ ਨ ਕੋ ਕਰੇ ਨਾ ਕਿਛੁ ਹੋਵੈ ਕਾਜੁ ॥ਚਿਤਿ ਆਵੈ ਓਸੁ ਪਾਰਬ੍ਰਹਮੁ ਤਾ ਨਿਹਚਲੁ ਹੋਵੈ ਰਾਜੁ ॥

    saahib nitaani-aa kaa taan. aa-ay na jaa-ee thir sadaa gur sabdee sach jaan. jay ko hovai dublaa nang bhukh kee peer. damrhaa palai naa pavai naa ko dayvai Dheer. su-aarath su-aa-o na ko karay naa kichh hovai kaaj. chit aavai os paarbarahm taa nihchal hovai raaj.

    Our Akal Purkh is the Power of the powerless, and does not come or go is Eternal and Permanent. Through the Word of the Guru's Sabd, It is known as True. If you are weakened by the pains of hunger and poverty, with no money in your pockets, and no one will give you any comfort, and no one will satisfy your hopes and desires, and none of your works is accomplished-- if you then come to remember the Supreme God, you shall obtain the eternal kingdom.

    ਜਾ ਕਉ ਚਿੰਤਾ ਬਹੁਤੁ ਬਹੁਤੁ ਦੇਹੀ ਵਿਆਪੈ ਰੋਗੁ ॥ਗ੍ਰਿਸਤਿ ਕੁਟੰਬਿ ਪਲੇਟਿਆ ਕਦੇ ਹਰਖੁ ਕਦੇ ਸੋਗੁ ॥ਗਉਣੁ ਕਰੇ ਚਹੁ ਕੁੰਟ ਕਾ ਘੜੀ ਨ ਬੈਸਣੁ ਸੋਇ ॥ਚਿਤਿ ਆਵੈ ਓਸੁ ਪਾਰਬ੍ਰਹਮੁ ਤਨੁ ਮਨੁ ਸੀਤਲੁ ਹੋਇ ॥
    jaa ka-o chintaa bahut bahut dayhee vi-aapai rog. garisat kutamb palayti-aa kaday harakh kaday sog. ga-on karay chahu kunt kaa gharhee na baisan so-ay. chit aavai os paarbarahm tan man seetal ho-ay.

    When you are plagued by great and excessive anxiety, and diseases of the body; when you are wrapped up in the attachments of household and family, sometimes feeling joy, and then other times sorrow; when you are wandering around in all four directions, and you cannot sit or sleep even for a moment -- if you come to remember the Supreme God, then your body and mind shall be cooled and soothed.
    -----Guru Arjan, Sri Raag, AGGS, Page, 70-71

    ਅਉਖੀ ਘੜੀ ਨ ਦੇਖਣ ਦੇਈ ਅਪਨਾ ਬਿਰਦੁ ਸਮਾਲੇ ॥ਹਾਥ ਦੇਇ ਰਾਖੈ ਅਪਨੇ ਕਉ ਸਾਸਿ ਸਾਸਿ ਪ੍ਰਤਿਪਾਲੇ ॥ ਪ੍ਰਭ ਸਿਉ ਲਾਗਿ ਰਹਿਓ ਮੇਰਾ ਚੀਤੁ ॥ਆਦਿ ਅੰਤਿ ਪ੍ਰਭੁ ਸਦਾ ਸਹਾਈ ਧੰਨੁ ਹਮਾਰਾ ਮੀਤੁ ॥ਮਨਿ ਬਿਲਾਸ ਭਏ ਸਾਹਿਬ ਕੇ ਅਚਰਜ ਦੇਖਿ ਬਡਾਈ ॥ ਹਰਿ ਸਿਮਰਿ ਸਿਮਰਿ ਆਨਦ ਕਰਿ ਨਾਨਕ ਪ੍ਰਭਿ ਪੂਰਨ ਪੈਜ ਰਖਾਈ ॥

    A¬ukẖī gẖaṛī na ḏėkẖaṇ ḏė¬ī apnā biraḏ samālė. Hāth ḏė¬ė rākẖai apnė ka¬o sās sās parṯipālė. Parabẖ si¬o lāg rahi¬o mėrā cẖīṯ. Āḏ anṯ parabẖ saḏā sahā¬ī ḏẖan hamārā mīṯ. Man bilās bẖa¬ė sāhib kė acẖraj ḏėkẖ badā¬ī. Har simar simar ānaḏ kar Nānak parabẖ pūran paij rakẖā¬ī.

    Akal Purkh does not let Its devotees face hardships. This is Its innate nature. Giving Its hand, Akal Purkh protects Its devotees; with each and every breath, and cherishes them. Their consciousness remains attached to God. In the beginning, and in the end, God is always my helper and companion -- blessed is my friend. My mind is delighted, gazing upon the marvelous, glorious greatness of the Master. Remembering, remembering It in meditation, Nanak is in ecstasy; God, in Its perfection, has protected and preserved his honor. -----Guru Arjan, Raag Dhanasari, AGGS, Page, 682

    ਤਾਤੀ ਵਾਉ ਨ ਲਗਈ ਪਾਰਬ੍ਰਹਮ ਸਰਣਾਈ ॥ਚਉਗਿਰਦ ਹਮਾਰੈ ਰਾਮ ਕਾਰ ਦੁਖੁ ਲਗੈ ਨ ਭਾਈ ॥ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਪੂਰਾ ਭੇਟਿਆ ਜਿਨਿ ਬਣਤ ਬਣਾਈ ॥ਰਾਮ ਨਾਮੁ ਅਉਖਧੁ ਦੀਆ ਏਕਾ ਲਿਵ ਲਾਈ ॥ਰਾਖਿ ਲੀਏ ਤਿਨਿ ਰਖਨਹਾਰਿ ਸਭ ਬਿਆਧਿ ਮਿਟਾਈ ॥ਕਹੁ ਨਾਨਕ ਕਿਰਪਾ ਭਈ ਪ੍ਰਭ ਭਏ ਸਹਾਈ ॥

    Ŧāṯī vā¬o na lag¬ī pārbarahm sarṇā¬ī. Cẖa¬ugiraḏ hamārai rām kār ḏukẖ lagai na bẖā¬ī. Saṯgur pūrā bẖėti¬ā jin baṇaṯ baṇā¬ī. Rām nām a¬ukẖaḏẖ ḏī¬ā ėkā liv lā¬ī. Rākẖ lī¬ė ṯin rakẖaṇhār sabẖ bi¬āḏẖ mitā¬ī. Kaho Nānak kirpā bẖa¬ī parabẖ bẖa¬ė sahā¬ī.

    The hot wind does not even touch one who is under the protection of the Supreme Akal Purkh. On all four sides I am surrounded by the Its Circle of Protection; pain does not afflict me, O Siblings of Destiny. I have met the Perfect True Guru, who has done this deed. Akal Purkh has given me the medicine of the Its Name, and I enshrine love for the It. Savior Akal Purkh has saved me, and eradicated all my sickness. Says Nanak, God has showered me with Its Mercy; and has become my help and support.
    -----Guru Arjan, Raag Bilawal, AGGS, Page, 819


    Development of fortitude helps one develop the mettle of one’s character. It does so through the development of other virtues. Then under the directions incorporated in AGGS a good moral character can be molded and evolved. Courage is required to follow the teachings of the Gurus. Being steadfast in this effort, one can grow in spirituality. Fortitude is the marshal of thoughts, the armor of the will, and the fort of reason.

    Virinder S. Grewal
    Williamston, MI

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